How Flies Can Affect Cows of Different Ages
Flies are a common nuisance for cows of all kinds. In fact, flies are one of the major causes of economic losses in the dairy industry. Not only do they cause discomfort and stress to animals, but they also transmit diseases that can have severe health implications for cattle. But the issues that arise from flies, and the severity of these issues, can differ depending on the cow’s age. In the following article, we’ll discuss how flies affect both young and adult cows differently.
How Flies Can Affect Cattle of Any Age
No matter the age, the beginning of a fly problem starts when flies spread pathogens by coming into direct contact with an animal’s mucous membranes (such as eyes), or its hooves and mouth. Because flies can carry infected feces from other animals that can contaminate feed and water sources, this contact with cattle can lead to outbreaks of serious illnesses such as mastitis, salmonellosis, and leptospirosis.
How Flies Affect Adult Cattle
Adult cows are particularly vulnerable to fly-borne diseases, such as pinkeye and joint illness, both of which can cause blindness or lameness in cattle. This can lead to reduced milk production and even death.
As cows age, they become more susceptible to these diseases and parasites as their immune systems weaken. For example, the fly stomoxys calcitrans is known to spread foot rot or digital dermatitis in older cows. This infection is painful and causes inflammation around the hoofs of affected animals, making it difficult for them to walk. Additionally, flies are known to carry bacteria such as salmonella which can cause gastrointestinal infections which can lead to diarrhea and dehydration in mature cows.
To prevent fly-borne diseases in adult cattle, you can use insecticide solutions such as JustiFLY® in cow feed. They should also provide clean bedding for their cows and remove manure piles regularly to reduce fly populations around their property.
How Flies Affect Young Calves
Young calves are particularly susceptible to the effects of flies since their immune systems haven’t fully developed. In addition to carrying diseases, the constant presence of flies around young calves is enough to cause them stress. This can lead to poor growth due to a lack of appetite and weight loss from not digesting their food properly.
Flies also leave behind saliva or feces when feeding on a calf’s skin which can lead to painful sores known as “summer itch” and other skin problems such as scours (diarrhea).
Similar to adult cattle, protecting young calves from flies entails using insecticide ointments or sprays, which will help keep flies away while simultaneously healing existing wounds. Additionally, you should ensure that there is plenty of shade available for the young calves so they don’t become over-heated while grazing during hot days – this will help minimize fly activity around them since most species prefer cooler temperatures.
Flies pose a serious threat to cows of all ages; however, there are steps that you can take in order to reduce their impact, including regular cleaning practices around barns/pastures, providing adequate shade, using insecticides, applying ointments/sprays, and setting up fly traps.
With proper management practices in place, you can significantly reduce their financial losses due to fly infestations while providing healthier living environments for their livestock at the same time.
Helpful Insecticide for Cows of All Ages
JustiFLY® Feedthrough is an essential insecticide that can help prevent or fight harmful flies or fighting harmful flies for cows of all ages. You simply mix one JustiFLY® pack with one 50-lb. bag of free-choice minerals to start. Doing so breaks the life cycle of the flies. The cattle ingest the larvicide as they feed on the treated mineral. It passes through the animal and starts to work on flies in the cattle manure.